I was eight years old when my dad starting sexually and physically abusing me. I didn’t meet him until I was six years old because my parents divorced shortly after I was born.
We lived in Florida when he moved in with us. I was so excited because I felt like all the other kids at my school; I had a mom and dad. After a while my parents were remarried and my mom was pregnant with my little sister. Soon my dad convinced my mom to move back to Mississippi. I was so excited about meeting my new family.
A couple of years later, we were staying with my grandmother, and my mom was going to register me for school. She was getting ready in the bathroom and my dad and I were lying in my grandma’s bed. He touched me and said it was a different way of "tickling" me. Being eight at the time I trusted my dad and thought nothing was wrong with it. He used to give me popsicles for letting him tickle me, and he said that it was our "special secret". I was not supposed to tell my mom or anyone else. He told me that if I ever wanted him to stop just to say so and he would. One day I told him that I didn’t like it anymore and asked him to stop and he said he would. Soon after we were playing and he did it again. I told him that he said he would stop. He said, "Everyone needs a little ticking sometimes." He kept doing it from then on, even though he promised me he would stop. Over the years it became more frequent, and worse. He went from outside my clothing to inside of them. When I was ten he would make me get into sexual positions and show me what to do and what they were. He told me it was so when I had a boyfriend and when we were having sex I would know what to do. He also told me that he would be the first person I would have sex with. He was just waiting until I turned sixteen, because then it would be legal. When I was eleven he was molesting me and I looked up at him and said, "I am eleven years old, your my dad, I’m your daughter, you’re not suppose to do this." He told me to shut up.
We moved a couple of times and I was still beaten and molested everywhere we went. On one occasion he was very drunk and told me to open my legs and I wouldn’t, so he punched me in my nose hard enough for it to gush out blood. Eventually we moved back to Mississippi and it was getting closer to my sixteenth birthday. For normal teenage girls, this was the day you looked forward to, but I was wishing the day would never come. On February 27th, 2009 my dad came into my room and tried to rape me, I fought him off and he went into the living room and started laughing about it. He asked me if I hated him and I said yes. He continued to laugh. He asked me again and I said yes I really do, he said that if I felt that way then I should go live with my grandmother, but I knew I couldn’t leave my two sisters alone with him or the same thing would happen to them.
On March 3rd, 2009 I told my mom about my dad molesting me. At this time it had been going on for eight years. She confronted him and he said, "I don’t believe I would do that to my daughter." My mom left to go return a movie and my dad beat me and told me I just killed him, and that I just cost him his wife and kids. When my mom came home he left and she called the police and we left. He came home and realized we were gone and tried to commit suicide. He called the ambulance himself and was removed from our house.
In June, 2010 my dad received 90 years for what he did to me. We also found out I was not his only victim; there were 5 other girls. Including his involvement in a murder, I have a beautiful son now and I’m still struggling with my PTSD, but I had the courage to standup and tell. I don’t know where I would be today if I didn’t, but I know now that I have a bright future ahead of me, and that no one else will be hurt by him anymore. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to share my story. For those of you reading this who think you are the only one out there, DON’T. You are not alone. God bless each and everyone that is currently or has previously lived through abuse. Break the cycle and Speak up, don’t let them control you.